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Cablegate: Turkey: Funding Requested for Anti-Tip Initiatives

VZCZCXYZ0000
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHAK #1893/01 2060736
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 250736Z JUL 07
FM AMEMBASSY ANKARA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 3114
INFO RUEHIT/AMCONSUL ISTANBUL PRIORITY 3065
RUEAWJA/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHDC PRIORITY

UNCLAS ANKARA 001893

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR G/TIP JANE SIGMON, USAID RUTH POJMAN, GLENN ROJERS
AND SARAH BERRY

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: AFIN EAID ELAB PHUM SMIG SOCI TU
SUBJECT: TURKEY: FUNDING REQUESTED FOR ANTI-TIP INITIATIVES

1. (SBU) Post requests Department and USAID consider funding
anti-trafficking in persons (TIP) initiatives in Turkey to
support Turkey,s efforts to qualify as a Tier I TIP country
(see paras. 3 - 6). U.S. resources and/or expertise in the
areas cited in the 2007 TIP Report can improve Turkey,s
anti-TIP capacity and make a big contribution to its anti-TIP
performance. Specifically, Turkey needs to improve victim
identification procedures and better collect and consolidate
trafficking data. According to the report, it should also
investigate, prosecute, convict and sentence government
officials complicit in trafficking. Finally, the GOT should
ensure judicial officials receive victim identification and
sensitivity training.

2. (SBU) Investing in People -- Health and Education is a
foreign assistance priority for U.S. Mission Turkey. Our FY
2009 Mission Strategic Plan (MSP) requested $9 million in ESF
funding to join NGO and international organization programs
on women's health, education and trafficking in persons.
Improving Turkey,s TIP ranking is also an MSP performance
indicator. Our 2007 target is to achieve effective
implementation of trafficking laws resulting in increased
convictions and incarcerations of traffickers, and for Turkey
to qualify for Tier I in the Department's annual TIP report.

PROJECT PROPOSALS
-----------------

3. (SBU) We request USG funding for the International
Organization for Migration,s (IOM -- the major implementing
partner for anti-TIP programs in Turkey) project proposal for
legal services to TIP victims (see para. 8). Under Turkish
administrative policy, all trafficking victims -- actual or
assumed -- are guaranteed free legal services, provided by
the relevant local bar association. IOM,s proposal aims to
train new lawyers -- particularly women -- and develop a core
group of experts on providing services to TIP victims. These
services include visa and immigration services, and the
guidance to victims necessary if they are to cooperate with
judicial authorities on prosecutions. The project would have
a positive impact on prosecutions and victim sensitivity.
IOM is also submitting the proposal to the Netherlands
Government for possible funding. The focus of the project is
Ankara. The USG could partner with the Netherlands or,
perhaps in concert with another donor, expand the program to
other TIP hotspots, such as Istanbul, Trabzon and/or Antalya.
Preliminary discussions with MOJ and with non-governmental
TIP experts indicate that both government and NGOs believe
Turkey's anti-trafficking efforts would benefit from
TIP-specific training for core groups of legal service
providers.

4. (SBU) In addition to the above proposal, we suggest the
USG fund or support a number of other anti-TIP projects.
Among these are training on victim identification and data
collection by U.S. or international experts. The GOT has
demonstrated some interagency weakness in its ability to
track TIP cases from arrest through prosecution, conviction
and sentencing. Supporting an effort such as this would also
directly support post,s ability to accurately report on GOT
anti-TIP efforts.

5. (SBU) USG funding could also make a direct and meaningful
impact on the lives of victims by funding operations of
Turkey,s two existing, dedicated anti-TIP shelters, based in
Ankara and Istanbul, or, funding the start-up of a third
shelter in another trafficking hot spot. The shelters are
critical to the implementation of Turkey,s anti-TIP action
plan. Human Resources Development Fund runs the Istanbul
shelter, and the Woman's Solidarity Fund operates the Ankara
shelter, with some GOT support. An MOU with the municipality
created the Istanbul shelter, whereby the city provides free
rent. Secretary Powell and FM Gul attended the signing
ceremony. USG funds could be directed toward specific
shelter operations, such as psychological or legal services.
A dedication of USG funds could and should stimulate matching
resources from the GOT, further expanding shelter capacity.

6. (SBU) USG directly supported last year's GOT-sponsored
and IOM-prepared public awareness campaign, "Have you Seen My
Mother," which successfully eroded some of the stigma of
prostitution attached to trafficking victims by appealing to
Turks' strong sense of family. Turkey is a conservative
country, and this stigma discourages NGOs and private
industry, as well as local government, from focusing on the
provision of trafficking victim assistance. We should
consider funding another such campaign to maintain the
positive momentum.
7. (U) Although Turkey is a Tier II TIP country, and its
performance is improving, much remains to be done. An
investment now will pay substantial dividends. Targeted U.S.
assistance can raise Turkey,s capacity, improving the lives
of victims, while helping to move Turkey to the level of a
Tier I country -- one that meets the minimum standards for
the elimination of TIP.

IOM PROJECT SUMMARY: Combating TIP Through Legal Assistance
and Judicial Cooperation (full proposal to be sent
separately, by email)
--------------------------------------------- ------------

8. (U) BEGIN TEXT. The project proposal will fund
comprehensive capacity building in the field of legal
assistance for trafficked persons in Turkey as well as
selected countries of the Black Sea region. This will be
carried out through:

-- Awareness-raising on human trafficking for the legal
community through organized workshops and panels within the
Internship Attorney Program by including the revised Turkish
Penal Code and the Code of Penal Procedures for newly
examined attorneys in Ankara;
-- Establishing and training a core-group of legal experts on
counter-trafficking, to provide legal assistance to
trafficked persons;
-- Cooperation and the promotion of mutual legal assistance
within the Black Sea Bar Associations in cooperation with the
Turkish Bar Association;

The main aim of the project proposal is to increase the
prosecution of traffickers in Turkey and in the region. The
project will also ensure that the human rights of trafficked
persons are respected and that they have full access to
justice. END TEXT.

Visit Ankara's Classified Web Site at
http://www.state.sgov.gov/p/eur/ankara/

WILSON

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